AFC Asian Cup 2019 is running through January 5 – February 1. The tournament is bigger than ever expanding from 16 to 24 teams. According to online sportsbook reviews sites in Portugal, the outright favourites are the blue Samurai of Japan and the defending champions of Australia. Yet, some of the lower tier teams could easily upset the Asian Cup winner odds. Those teams are Thailand, Lebanon, China, Syria and Iraq.
Thailand Qualified as the Winner of their Group
Despite being ranked 118th in the world, Thailand “War Elephants” have a good chance to upset the Asian Cup winner odds. They value at 126 to be the outright winners, according to Betvictor Sportsbook. Thailand witnessed a lot of progression in the last ten years. The domestic league is growing, and some of best Thai footballers are playing in Japan.
Thailand qualified for the Asian Cup as the winner of Group F in the second round. They won four of their six games. High expectations are laid on their head coach Milovan Rajevac who led Ghana to the quarterfinals in 2010 World Cup. Rajevac failed to defend the AFF Championship title. Therefore, he needs to score better result in the Asian Cup.
Lebanon Return after 19 Years of Absence
It may be worth looking at Lebanon to follow Saudi Arabia through from the Group E. Lebanon are returning to the Asian Cup after a gap of 19 years. This will be their second appearance since they were knocked out in group-stage in 2000. Lebanon depend on their skipper Hassan Mattouk the country’s all-time top goalscorer. In addition, the Montenegrin Miodrag Radulovic will lead the team with a counter attacking style of play. The odds are 101 for Lebanon to win the Cup.
Marcello Lippi to Carry China to his First Asian Cup
China who have never won the Asian Cup are led by the Italian legend Marcello Lippi. He aims to add an Asian Cup to his long managerial CV that includes the 2006 World Cup. He also won a Champions League medal and five Italian league titles with Juventus. However, his last two years in charge of China have been underwhelming. The Chinese national team is one of the oldest in the tournament. They suffer from injuries, and the expectations back home are as low as ever. Despite all of that, Lippi might win the last title with 41, before retiring.
War Torn Syria to Make Their Mark in the UAE
Despite war devastating the country for almost eight years, the Syrian national football team has qualified for the 2019 Asian Cup. With Al Somah on their side they are confident of finishing second behind Australia and securing a spot in the knockout rounds. Some experts who follow the team believe they have a good chance of making their mark in the UAE. They value at 34 to upset the Asian Cup winner odds.
Iraq to Repeat Their 2007 Surprise Win
Iraq have a great history in the Asian Cup. They were surprise winners back in 2007, finished fourth in 2015. They should once again prove to be a tricky opponent for the bigger teams.
According to online sportsbook news in Portugal, Iraq’s strength stems from their youthful squad. They have a quite new manager the Slovenian Srecko Katanec who spent only four months at the helm. However he already made an impact, and he might lead the team to another title with 21 odds.
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